tv Glenn Beck FOX News April 29, 2011 5:00pm-6:00pm EDT
congresswoman gabrielle giffords. there is president obama and first lady michelle obama earlier today in florida. all right. bret baier coming up next. >> bret: good evening. i'm bret baier. this is a fox news alert. we have a jam-packed special two-hour show ahead with reports on deadly protests in syria. interview with former governor sarah palin on energy. the debt and her political future. and a complete wrap-up of the royal wedding. but first, we begin with the aftermath of the deadly tornadoes in the south. president obama today got a first-hand look at the devastation from up with of the worst tornado outbreaks in decades. meanwhile, hundreds are mourning lost loved ones and thousands are sifting through the rubble of their homes and lives. the death toll right now from wednesday's storms stands at 318. with 228 killed in alabama. both numbers are expected to rise. that is where we begin our fox team coverage tonight with correspondent jonathan serrie
in concord. >> reporter: good afternoon, bret. tornadoes destroyed nearly half the homes homes in the smal unincorporated community and killed six people. this morning, search teams scoured the area for additional bodies but cadaver dogs did not pick up any scent. given all the destruction, local officials are relieved the death toll isn't any higher they tell us the tornado that rip through the community in 1998 served as a wake-up call and this time residents were prepared. residents such as mike owen who saw the tornado alerts on tv and took cover with his wife in their interior bathroom. the only part of their house that wasn't completely destroyed. mr. owens, a life-long resident of concord insists on remain on his property, camping in a tent. >> there is really nowhere else i want to go right now. you know, this is my home. i want to stay here. >> reporter: earlier today, president obama toured tornado damage in tuscaloosa. he said he had never seen such
devastation, but commended residents for their resilience and promised full support delivering federal aid. >> i want to make a commitment to the communities here we are going to do everything we can to help these communities rebuild. we can't bring those who have been lost back. they're alongside god at this point. >> reporter: back in concord, residents say it took them nearly a decade to recover after the last tornado and they suspect the new recovery evident will take even longer given the scope of all the damage. to their community and others like it throughout the southeast. now to my colleague mike tobin in smithville, mississippi. >> reporter: mississippi governor haley barbour says he is committed to helping the people of the town build a new and better smithville after the national weather center say it was an ef-5, the most category of tornado that ripped apart the little town from front to end. scenes like this are common
place, calls, barred up and tossed around like they didn't weigh anything. homes ripped down to the slab foundation. most of the homes here don't have basements. the people in this town had little time and nowhere to hide when they first got the warning about the tornadoes. that's why you see a lot of heavy equipment out here, front end loaders and backhoes, trying to as gently and possible pick through the debris and find more victims, hoping against the odds they find survivors. mississippi is watching the floodwaters in the mighty river as they come down here preparing to set more records. possibly, they're getting ready to follow one tragedy with another. now to my colleague steve harrigan in chattanooga, tennessee. >> reporter: this is the past of one of seven deadly tornadoes that touched down in eastern tennessee. wind speeds got up to 190 miles per hour. >> i could tell the wind was really going crazy. blowing every which direction. etold him to come and let's get in the hall and pray. we took cover in the hall and we was praying and we prayed
the whole time. the lord brought us through it. >> reporter: the national weather service using words it doesn't normally use like "obliterated." right now volunteers are going out to make sure people have food and water as they pick through the rubble. an example of what the volunteers are handing out. you can get a sandwich and a cookie. but people here will need more help than that. even after the physical damage is taken care of, people said what really hurt was they really lost are the memories, family history. bret, back to you. >> bret: the head of the federal emergency management agency was also on the ground in alabama today. craig fugate joined us moments ago from tuscaloosa to talk about what fema is doing and what he saw today. >> well, i've seen a lot of tornadoes but i have not seen tornadoes that caused this much devastation over large areas as we've seen in alabama. mississippi, alabama, other states hit. but in tuscaloosa in alabama, extreme devastation, and homes that are totally destroyed.
nothing left but the slab street after street and across the state. just repeteed over and over again. to put this in perspective for somebody sitting at home, we see tornadoes, you know, every season in the spring. throughout tornado alley and sometimes down in the south. this is different, though. >> this is. you have to go all the way back to 1974 to see a tornado outbreak that was this deadly in the united states. again, some of the tornadoes looked to have been on the ground for an extremely long distances. i was flying from birmingham up here and that whole distance from there to tuscaloosa, i could see the track of the tornado on the ground the whole way. ranging from a quarter to a half mile destruction. i'm not seeing that before. i've seen concentrated destruction and individual towns hit. i haven't seen town after town after town. all in the path of one tornado flattened. >> bret: one of the biggest challenges that the towns, the states are facing now -- what are the biggest challenges
that the towns, the states are facing now? >> they have depleted a lot of the search and rescue is to take the next step and begin to clean up and look at recovery. here in alabama, president obama did declare a disaster for several counties and we're adding more counties but people need to understand it won't get better in a couple of days and a couple of weeks. even when it's no longer a news story, people here will spend a while getting their lives back together and rebuilding. so many homes were destroyed, it will take time to replace all the homes lost. >> bret: you know, some people were critical, obviously, of fema during hurricane katrina. and the reaction to disasters. largely managed to get on the ground. you've been getting on the ground very quickly in this disaster. what are you specifically doing for the people there right now? >> what is fema doing?
we're getting ready to support the recovery. we want to get here fast to make sure the state didn't need more assistance with search and rescue. we brought in generators in case there were a lot of power outages. we have supplies in, staging areas here. we have people hitting the ground. i think what we will find ourselves doing is looking at the temporary housing, how much assistance we will need for that. helping people find a place to live. and beginning the process as people now in the second day will be going and third day starting to think about what is next for their recovery. >> bret: craig fugate, the fema administrator. thank you for your time today. >> thank you. >> bret: gasoline jumped almost 2.5 cents a gallon overnight. the national average is $3.91. crude oil also had a big increase, up $1.07 to $113.93 a barrel. personal incomes and spending were up in march. incomes rose a half a percentage point. spending was up .6 of a point.
stocks were up. the dow added 47. the s&p 500 gained 3. the nasdaq finished a single point ahead. britain hosted the latest and perhaps most widely viewed royal wedding today. experts were predicting a worldwide audience of about 2 billion people, with a "b," to watch prince william and kate middleton exchange their vows. correspondent amy kellogg is live at buckingham palace with a day of pa gentry. good evening, amy. >> reporter: hi, bret. some say that pomp and ceremony put the great in to britain. but frankly, even those of white house live here and used to a fair amount of ceremonial detail in life, bret, were really wowed by the party that the palace put on today. now kate middleton did not use the brit's prerogative to turn up late. at 11:00 a.m., she walked in to westminster abbey wowing the crowd with the first
glimpse of her dress, designed by sarah burton for alexander mcqueen. with a lace bodice and ally que flowers, emblems of the four regions of the united kingdom. the bouquet included the blog blossom, sweet william, tribute to her bloom. the queen had three titles on prince william. earl of strassmore, scottish earldom. northern irish barrony. and duke of cambridge, making kate middleton now, the duchess of cambridge. finally the families returned to buckingham palace, where the newlyweds treated the public to a kiss. actually, two kisses. after which the royal air force did a ceremonial flyover, after the champagne and reception at buckingham palace, the couple drove off in prince charles' ashton martin convertible with a front license plate that red "just wed." this only to return to the
palace later tonight, for a rather intimate party for 300 expected to rage well into the night, if not until dawn. bret? >> bret: you didn't get invited, amy? >> reporter: sorry about that. i'm sorry about that. >> bret: all right. amy, thank you. we will have an in-depth discussion with former governor sarah palin on gas prices, the debt and her future a little bit later. but first, a no-go today, with the space shuttle. indistinct co] the charcoal went out already? [ sighs ] forget it. [ male announcer ] there's more barbeque time in every bag of kingsford charcoal. kingsford. slow down and grill. for dentists, the choice is clear. fact is, more dental professionals brush with an oral-b tooush an any other brush. trust the brush more dentists and gienists use, oral-b.
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>> bret: it will be at least monday before the shuttle endeavor begins its final mission. today's scheduled launch was scrubbed. correspondent phil keating is live at the kennedy space center to tell us what happened. good afternoon, phil. >> good afternoon, bret. space shuttle endeavor historic final launch now 9:22:00 p.m. monday afternoon at the earliest. the six-man crew was all suited up, riding in the astro
van when it suddenly made unprecedented u-turn three miles from the launch pad. nasa technicians noticed problems with the shuttle auxiliary power unit. critical during the ascent and descent. when they weren't working, nasa scrubbed the launch. the first family toured the processing facility as scheduled and launch control where they were going to watch the next-to-last shuttle launch. he met with the commander crew and astronaut mark kelly, whose wife gabrielle giffords was shot in the head in january. she is here in florida for the husband's launch, making the large nasa family proud. that includes the president who met with her privately for ten minutes getting updated on her recovery. for the winds, they were strong all day, and likely would have let it being scrubbed in the last minute anyway. but president obama has taken off to air force one to head to a commencement speech in miami. bret? >> bret: thank you. u.s. ambassador to the united nations susan rice reportedly told security council meeting
that libya troops are being given viagra and are engaging in sexual violence. rice said libyan snipers are targeting children. tunisia's news agency says libyan troops have been involved in clashes with tunisian troops. they are calling for ali abdullah saleh's ouster and hundreds of thousands mourned protesters slain earlier in the crackdown. they dubbed the day's protest "the friday of martyr" to remember more than 140 people killed so far. president obama today signed an executive order imposing new sanctions against syria's intelligence agency and two relatives of president. government crackdown on protesters there continues. syrian human rights group says troops killed 42 protesters in massive demonstrations today. correspondent reena ninan shows us what happened in damascus. >> reporter: for the first
time in six weeks, the unrest in syria has come to the capital, damascus. syrian security forces fired tear gas but the demonstrators were not deterred they dubbed today another day of rage. they won't settle for anything else than syrian president bashar assad's removal from power. security forces fired live ammunition in the crowd in daraa and at least ten people died. syrian base human rights group says more than 500 people lost their lives since it began. in the jordanian town that borders syria, thousands protested calling for the u.n. to intervene. the u.n. human rights council in geneva condemned the government of syria for the crackdown. >> under official ordering or undertaken attacks against a civilian population can be held criminally accountable. >> reporter: syrian state tv has been running what it says are confessions from detained protesters. they claim local muslim
clerics gave them money and weapons to kill syrian army soldiers and to burn syrian president baath party offices. the opposition says the confessions were fabricated. the international community has not demanded that assad leave office. it's only after he stopped shooting at it his people. request the syrian president has so far ignored. the death toll is expected to rise in jerusalem, reena ninan, fox news. >> bret: more on this with the foreign policy panel coming up. also coming up, we will ask sarah palin for her assessment on some of the perspective republican presidential candidates. but first, several of those hopefuls will be in the same room tonight. we'll tell you why. where do you go to find a super business ? you know, the ones who do such a super job, they're backed by the superguarantee® ? only superpages®. wherever you are, wherever you're going, you'll find the super business you need.
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>> bret: in america's election headquarters the biggest event so far in the 2012 presidential campaign takes place tonight in new hampshire. correspondent molly lion has a preview from manchester. >> reporter: as the country limps out of a recession, american families are still suffering. a political problem for president obama whose re-election efforts are underway and an opportunity for republicans to gain ground. independent voters like brant want to see solutions. >> finding a way for people to feel a little bit more confident about their spending, about their economy, about their job. >> reporter: tonight's presidential summit on spending and job creation, hosted by the chapter of americans for prosperity foundation, government advocacy group, will give republican hopefuls chance to offer vision for economic recovery. >> this is the kickoff of the republican campaign for president of the united states. >> reporter: fee you areed speakers include mitt romney, tim pawlenty, minnesota congresswoman michele bachmann, former pennsylvania
senator rick santorum and businessman herman cain. activists will be posted as conservative of the year. >> it's an opportunity for republicans to chart a new course, different course, one that believes in the free market, deregulation, tax reform. really spur the economy on. >> reporter: not allowing the g.o.p. field to get all the attention the new hampshire democratic party is lashing out at backyard favorite mitt romney by filing a complaint with the federal elections commission, electing he funneled cash from the state political action committee to the presidential campaign. romney's spokesperson andrea sal responded, "this is totally political. for those wondering what the obama jobs plan entails, it apparently involves hiring more lawyers at the f.e.c. to handle frivolous complaints filed by his minions." the political back-and-forth of the campaign season is ramping up, but voters are focused on issues like gas prices, food prices. in the republicans aim to beat
president that is well-funded they need to win the kitchal table issues they can talk about them tonight and next week in a debate thursday night on fox news. >> bret: it all begins. thank you. now let's talk with two democratic strategists about who their side fears most. joining me joe trippi and bob beckel. joe, start with you. the democrats look at this perspective field, and obviously there aren't a lot officials in yet. but who do the democrats fear most? >> right now, mitch daniels were to make the race -- >> governor of indiana. >> governor of indiana. yeah. i'd be more worried about him right now. i don't see how he gets the nomination yet. we're not especially clear he is going to run. of the people out there talking about it, he is the one that gives me the most pause. >> bret: indiana governor mitch daniels said today he will sign the controversial bill that cuts off government funding to planned parenthood, the nation's largest abortion provider. a bill that came to us from the indiana legislature. that is just breaking now.
obviously, that plays well for a primary. >> maybe he is running. that is something that will help him in the primary. if he didn't sipe it, he wouldn't be playing in iowa. that's for sure. >> what do you think? >> i agree. i think daniels is probably -- i think huckabee could be a tough candidate. interestingly enough, i don't think romney is that strong of a candidate. what i really don't understand is why mitt romney is appearing in new hampshire tonight and not being so far anyway, at the debate in south carolina. nor do i understand why newt gingrich is not yet decided to go. look, at this stage of the game, it's not as if you have a front-runner here. these are opportunities you get rarely and you ought to take them. the idea that whoever is advising these people, you know, they're doing real disservice to them they ought to be there. what are they afraid of? >> bret: if you were advising them you'd say get in? >> you've got to. first, you don't show the guys that are going to show -- somebody is going to make the news and move here. it's a vacuum.
somebody will lead into it. whether it's santorum or whoever it is, creates the news, wins the debate or catches some interview there, it's somebody you have to deal with next time. romney did this last time. >> bret: there is talk about money and all the fundraising the president is doing out there. billion dollars is that a concern for republicans who are now apparently saying we're going to wait to get into this thing? >> i don't think they understand. we have both run presidential campaigns they're behind the curve for money and infrastructure, like phones. it's eight months now before you have the first caucus they are very late. i can't remember one that has started this late ever. >> the only way to win these things now is to start building that network out there, to build the network across the country. take time to do that. each one of these events, this
debate is where other people say check this guy out. the only way to find $1 billion is start your own grass roots of people. you go after the big money but you still need thousands to help you. >> bret: the biggest vulnerability for president obama? >> the biggest vulnerability right now? gasoline prices. that's the most immediate thing that people understand and realize. the economy in the long run. but if you are obama and the kind of shape he is now -- we've both defended him the last years. but the fact is that incumbent is vulnerable as he seems, to not pick up more republican challengers. i mean when ronald reagan ran against, we had nine of us already in race. >> this reminds me more of 1992 when the big dog like mario cuomo, didn't go. ended up not running. we ended up with a field that paul songas, jerry brown, and bill clinton who had problems.
i mean with jennifer flowers and paula jones, saying all the problems, all the way through it and he gets the nomination and defeats the incumbent president that no one thought was beatable. with all the problems that obama has, if the economy keeps going, gas prices going keep going this way, and you don't get people like mitt romney entering the fray, if you are not a long distance runner, that is all presidential campaign is these days. >> you cannot give opportunities like this up. it's just not -- it's 101 in politics. if you don't show, you have a problem. people will ask why. you'll be the first one to get picked on. >> bret: this was good. we'll do it again. >> thanks. >> bret: when we come back, the momma grizzlies bears her fangs at a familiar target. >> obama, you do not have our concept. you didn't have it in november. you certainly don't have it now. you willfully ignored the will of the american people. [ telephone rings ]
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can stop frequent heartburn before it begins? heartburn happens when stomach acid refluxes into the esophagus. prilosec otc uses a unique delayed-release system that protects the medicine as it passes through the stomach's tough acid. then it gets absorbed into the body, turning off many acid-producing pumps at the source. with just one pill a day, you get 24-hour heartburn protection all day and all night. prilosec otc. heartburn ne. power on. >> bret: welcome back to our special two-hour edition of "special report." checking the headlines now, president obama today toured the devastation in the south from wednesday's tornadoes. the death toll now stands at 318. 228 of those in alabama. prince william and kate middle top are now the duke and duchess of cambridge. they were married today in a lavish ceremony at westminster
abbey. the price of gasoline in the u.s. went up almost 2.5 cents overnight. the national average is now $3.91 a gallon. the former governor of alaska insists she knows exactly who is responsible for the steep rise in gal prices. sarah palin told us in her interview she blames president obama. >> i certainly do. the gas prices have increased 67% since he took over. instead of doing everything in his power to decrease prices by allowing more domestic supply of oil, which would translate to obviously more supply in gasoline, too, he is heading in the other direction. he's asking the saudis and other arab nation to ramp up production so we can purchase from them. that makes absolutely no sense, because there goes our jobs, our opportunities, our money in to foreign land. we could be having that circulated here. and that would boost our economy. >> bret: what about ending oil subsidiaries? subsidiaries for oil
companies. where do you stand on that? >> here is where we need to go there nationally. this is what i did as governor of alaska, which obviously is an energy-producing state. you need to crack down on big oil, making sure that they're not writing off through tax loopholes, the government subsidiaries that we're hearing over with right now and wanting to decrease those or eliminate those. we're only talking about $4 billion. compare that to the $14 trillion debt that he, our president, has contributed to. and $4 trillion is a drop in the bucket. he shouldn't assume that the $4 billion is going to affect big oil. no. it's independent explorers that we want out there with the entrepreneurial spirit and manpower and job-creating ability to be out there exploring and then responsibly exploiting and extracting our god-given natural resources. >> bret: right, but do you concede that it is powerful political point, if
exxon-mobil on thursday reports 69% increase in the first quarter earnings and the earnings jumping to $10.65 billion, obviously tied to the high price of oil. if on top of that, they are getting subsidiaries, you agree it's a powerful political point that maybe scoring points with the american voters? >> you have no idea how large an entity the big oil companies really are when it comes to lobbying for what is best for their bottom line they're capitalists they're doing what their shareholders, the stakeholders are demanding of them. the ceos, the big oil companies they're saying look out for the bottom line. take as much as you can. leave as little behind. that is their job if you will. >> bret: so you would end subsidiaries of big oil? >> i'd have to look exactly at what it is that obama is talking about. again, you have to remember, president obama -- i say this with all due respect to the office of presidency -- he doesn't know what he is doing when it comes to energy. he does not know that the
$4 billion he thinks he is going to stick it to exxon, b.p., conoco-phillips. no it will be the independent producers, explorers out there creating jobs that will be hit with the end of subsidy. we have to take a hard look at this. >> bret: last thing on this. house budget committee chairman paul ryan on thursday called for ending oil subsidiaries as part of a bigger plan. obviously, this is in the republican party about the issue. >> i don't think there is as big a split as some want to make it out to be. we have to make sure there isn't crony capitalism and corporatism and that there aren't loopholes out there that only the big companies that afford the attorneys and the lawyers to get themselves through the loopholes that they exist and we have to make sure loopholes are closed. i'm all for that. >> bret: on the debt ceiling vote that is coming up in the coming week, if you were in congress would you vote against increasing the debt ceiling?
>> hell, no. i would not vote to increase the debt ceiling. otherwise it just shows the american people we're not serious yet. we're still going to incur more debt. we don't have to increase the debt ceiling in the next few weeks. it turns my stomach to hear the assumption articulated that we have to, despite the fact we're raking in, the federal government, $6 billion a day. take that money and service our debt first. and pay down some of that debt. make sure that we're showing the international financial markets and our lenders that we're serious about getting our debt and deficit problems under control. >> bret: so what would you say to the republicans republico vote for it on advice of experts in wall street and around the country who believe that not increasing it would really hurt the economy and create a disaster? >> i would say before you think about seriously voting to increase the debt limit and incur more unsustainable, immoral, unethical debt that is really going to ruin our
country to continue down this path. prioritize service the debt first an pay for the services that are constitutionally mandated. let the state take care of a lot of the service and projects. if a state wants to do something a little special like extra roads, or extra museums and monuments and cowboy poetry, let that state figure out how they are going to pay for it. >> bret: okay, governor palin. where are you on a perspective presidential run? >> i haven't decided yet. while i'm making up my mind still, bret, i'm going to continue getting that message out there that smaller, smarter government is the only thing that is going to save this country's economy. >> bret: okay. so since you haven't decide and since fox news is paying you to be an am list, how about -- paying you to be an am list, how about analyzing the other perspective candidates. mitt romney. >> i appreciate mitt romney is one who seems to be ready to jump in there.
full h-fledged as a candidate. i respect him. more the merrier in the primary. i don't want to hear elites try to discourage through process that hasn't even started yet, the idea that there are only a few chosen ones who will be deemed appropriate to run for office. that is what a primary is for. debate, discussion. competition. that is what breeds success. competition. let the people decide. elite, give your opinion but don't discourage people from running for office. >> bret: what do you make of donald trump? >> he is one i'll put in that category of appreciating his willingness to jump in there. call it like he sees it. don't care what the media says about you. he, of course, is going to, as he continues down the roted, feel the sting of scrutiny, that especially the main stream media will have all over him, bless his heart. but you know, he is going to throw off good ideas, i'm sure and some ideas that we'll want to debate. >> bret: michele bachmann.
>> she, too. you know, she has got her 2-1/2 terms of service there in the house of representatives. i can respect because she has had to go up against the elites, if you, will in the party and buck some tides. i look for more in a candidate independence. i don't want to see them beholden to a political party they let partisanship get in the way of doing what is right. i respect her independence. >> bret: the common theme you respect people getting in or talking about getting in the race and you want the process to work itself out. but when i talked to you last year, about your perspective candidacy, you said you were going to see who got in the race, talking about it, and if someone, you believe that you could support got in, you probably would not. but if you didn't see someone, you would get in. so we're getting to the point of do you see somebody? >> we're not to that point yet, bret. and remember that this race
seems to, the general election of course is 19 months away still. i still do think that a lot of this is much too early. the speculation, the positioning of potential candidates is too early. that brings me to something more important, though. that's what the president of the united states is doing to us, essentially, when you consider that the general election isn't until 19 months from now. he's already in campaign mode. he's already trying to raise $1 billion, he is going to raise and spend in order to try to hold on to his seat. >> bret: that is the point, governor. if the president is out there raising money and he says he is going to raise $1 billion and the republicans have to come to the table with a lot of money that is going to take time to raise that money. it doesn't just come out of the air, right? >> nope. the point is the president should be buckling down and trying to find solutions to the challenges facing the country. >> it doesn't matter how much. >> i do not want to believe
that the american political process is going to come down to who has the most money. if that is the case, count me out, you know. count out anybody who has come from middle class, non-having those strings tied to big, maybe corporate entities and the lobby firms and all of that influence. and in obama's case, the last go-around, potentially foreign money or money we never did see being accounted for. somebody like me, i would never be able to compete in an environment like that if truly the american people were going to concede that's all it's about is money. i'm not going to believe that. >> bret: before i let you go, are you suggesting that the f.e.c. may find that foreign money got into the obama campaign in 2008? >> am i wrong to bring up the fact -- and maybe, bret, at this point you have more information than i do on where a lot of the dollars were that were unaccounted for. we saw much proof of a lot of
contribution to obama campaign, credit card contribution under fake names and addresses that perhaps weren't even real addresses in the u.s. i have certainly hope we won't just give up on making sure we have free and fair elections. not just obama's. heck, some on the g.o.p., too. g.o.p. side. let's make sure that rules are being followed. we are a land of laws. >> bret: governor palin, as always, thank you very much. if you do have an announcement, please let us know. >> thank you so much, bret. >> bret: we will talk about the latest violence in syria when a special foreign policy panel begins right after the break. [ music playing, indistinct conversations ] the charcoal went out already? [ sighs ] forget it.
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we have by speaking out against it but other means to stop the violence and to move forward to serious reform. >> bret: the obama administration announcing today that the, they are imposing financial penalties against three top syrian officials. and this comes as there is a crackdown again in syria. as we told you earlier, the situation seems to be growing worse in syria, as protesters refusing to back down. the government continues to crackdown. talk about this with the special foreign policy panel. former state department spokesman p.j. crowley. michael o'hanlan. former deputy defense secretary paul wolfowitz. sames like the situation -- it seems like the situation in syria is getting worse. can sanctions work? >> the united nations doesn't have a lot of leverage. we have had sanctions for a long time but from a european stand point and regional stand
point, there is some leverage that can be obtained there. i think what is significant today, it's the demonstrations in damascus. what is happening here is that the syrian people having lived under fear going back to assad's father, they are to longer afraid and they're no longer intimidated so i think the tension inside the country is going to grow. >> bret: mike, 42 people kill today, according to activists, 450 so far, at what numbers does it reach the point where we are two a libya stand point? where you don't want to see the mass graves that we heard from the president. >> that is a question i wrestle with, too. i don't know if there is a numerical feeling. probably a sense of how you think it's headed, whether it's headed out of control or not. i think the libya style response could be hard for us. not going to have the arab league is up port or the plausible way to take side of the demonstrators in the campaign. if we're not careful, we can get them killed more than we
can help them because of the nature of the geography and where they stand with society. i'm with p.j. to get the other councilmembers to threaten sanctions and threaten derecognition. that is the plausible way to make a difference. what we would like to do is make assad feel if he keeps this up, he will lose the ability to be the future legitimate ruler of the country. that is the best i can do. >> bret: your assessment? >> i'm for sanctions but i think sanctions on these people are of a limited value they're brutal people fighting for their survival and they won't pay attention to sanctions. deregular -- derecognition is something that is important. it sends a message that we think the regime needs to go eventually. one of the most important things we could be doing is helping the opposition, demonstrators communicate with each other. to try to break through this
communication plan, ally regime. >> bret: quickly, why not the derecognition? >> derecognition aspect has potential significance. if this trajectory continues, that is a logical next step. by the same token, having somewhere there who can communicate clearly, the president of the united states, that concerns the president of the united states has about this, has value as well. we want to resolve this in some way. being able to have that conversation is important. but there does come a point, where we clearly need to signal that just like we did with gaddafi, who has lost his legitimacy in the eyes of the president, there may come a point if the trajectory continues we have to take that step. >> i don't think it means more now than a symbolic issue and i think the cymballism -- symbolism is wrong. >> bret: more with the panel
>> bret: back with the special foreign policy panel today. in syria, protesters chanting "we are not afraid." despite 42 of them apparently dying today. what is next? let's go down the row here. >> this thing seems to be spreading and there seems to be splits with the syrian army. we should get the word out as much as we can. help them get the word out. they are our enemy and they caused trouble and added to diplomacy with 13 and maybe saudi arabia would be important. >> bret: mike? >> one thing i say is the arab league is so crucial in libbia, hard to get the arab league to play a role here. we should start talking to the arab league about what level of violence would be excessive. and we should start making
gaddafi -- excuse me. assad aware -- he seems like gaddafi. assad aware he is moving in a gaddafi type direction even with his own arab neighbors. he starts to worry about losing legitimacy with them, something we should try. >> bret: p.j., has the administration changed the perception of assad when clinton called him a reformer. has perspective change? >> didn't call him reformer. >> bret: referenceed in congress by others. >> he's clearly not a reformer. he has had 11 years in power. done things in the margin. whether it's because he won't reform or can't reform because his father's regime won't let him, we're seeing the real assad here. i think it is going to get ugly in the short term. the united states is going to have to lead a consensus to isolate them. and if necessary, you know, delegitimize him. >> bret: go to libya now. look at the map at misurata, the city where the battle has
been fierce. they say the gaddafi forces have been founding them there and gaddafi forces say they have taken over the port city of misurata. what do we think is happening in libya? >> gaddafi is still on the march. and the campaign has had some success. i think this week, what a significance of looking for other ways of applying military pressure, the introduction of the predators in the absense of other aircraft where there is a valid concern about shoulder-fired missiles. and also, broadening the target list so it's not just about the troops engaged in misurata but it's about the commander and control that enables gaddafi's forces to operate effectively. we have to -- i agree with the decision not to put boots on the ground. i agree there has to be a political solution here. but he has to feel real military pain here that changes the dynamic from what we see now. >> bret: paul? >> there are a lot of things we could be doing we're not.
it's miraculous to think they have held out as long as they have. if gaddafi has or does take misurata we are headed for a long-term stalemate. i think we have been too slow recognizing the provisional government, equipping it, on arming it, on training it there are many things that could be done. some of them will take time. but the sooner the things start and the sooner the message is there, the sooner things will change. >> bret: michael? >> defensive arms we should be supplying now. this is one of those few places because of the geography where it's easy to distinguish between defensive arms and offenseive arms. i don't want to encourage them to march on tripoli because i think they will lose. i'm not sure that strategy works but we have to give them anti-tanks weapons and more in the way of communication and training. otherwise nato will be doing no-fly zone operations for years on end and they could lose more. >> bret: that's very interesting. thank you. another hour of "special report" on the way. stay right here on fox news channel. if your racing thoughts keep you awake...
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